Doc Rivers: 'Not Cool' for Cavs to Rest Stars

The Cavaliers fell to the Clippers 108-78, starting many of their reserves.

Turns out the Big Three needed every bit of that conserved energy one day later to hold off the last-place Los Angeles Lakers. Then on Saturday it was the Cavs, who chose to rest LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love against the Clippers.

Kevin Love had 21 points and 15 rebounds as the Cavaliers survived a surprising challenge from a 20-win opponent to clinch a playoff spot.

"We need to transfer that over to a different environment type game", Blake Griffin said. The Cavaliers played a smaller lineup for a lot of the game, so Zubac played only 19 minutes. "That's a good team over there, and they beat us".

The decision to sit Love and Irving against the Clippers was strictly due to health issues. But how do Cavs fans feel about their All-Stars missing games in order to rest?

"I heard", Lue said. Regardless, the league still tries to fit in stretches where players get three or four days off, and it's important to put your employee before your customer. This is just one of the ways that he has shown his incredible abilities. "Kid has a lot of talent", James said. "He's a special player".

Los Angeles did feature all five starters in double-figures, led by Russell's career-high performance. On Friday, they come back East - wrapping up the trip in Charlotte against Kemba Walker and the Hornets. That was the game in which he debuted his "Ice in My Veins" post-shot celebration.

D'Angelo Russell nearly matched Irving's tally for the Lakers as he got 40 points in a losing cause.

But the Cavaliers - who trailed by 11 early in the fourth quarter - began making their move early in the period, with Richard Jefferson scoring seven straight points to get Cleveland to within six, 95-89. He was asked about facing some of the league's best players. "He's a professional scorer". And it sucks at certain times because you only play in certain cities once, or you only play certain teams once on their home floor.

The Spurs were a little more comfortable, ending a two-game skid with a 118-102 win against the Sacramento Kings. "It was awesome", Walton said. He propelled the Lakers to a nine-point lead and an eventual 59-55 halftime advantage. And Richard Jefferson was a flawless 3-of-3 in the fourth quarter, finishing with seven big points in the Wine and Gold's late charge.

Tristan Thompson, who had a couple teeth re-aligned in a second-half collision with Julius Randle, finished with 10 boards, grabbing six off the offensive glass. Smith went 1 for 7 in 26 minutes, making a dunk with 5.9 seconds to play.

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